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Review: 'American Fiction' a great flick

American Fiction

"American Fiction" is based on the novel “Erasure” by Percival Everett.  Image from silverspot.net

Abby Cowels

Five out of Five Stars

By Abby Cowels
Staff Writer

“American Fiction” (2023), starring Jeffery Wright, is an American dramedy film written and directed by Cord Jefferson. The film is based on the novel “Erasure” (2001) by Percival Everett.

The film follows Dr. Thelonious “Monk” Ellison, a prideful and frustrated writer, trying to nullify the idea of the Black stereotype through his work. But, he finds himself being labeled on store shelves under African-American authors.

After Monk sees another author, Sintara Golden (Issa Rae), receiving praise for her newest novel “We’s Lives in Da Ghetto.” He finds that these “Black experience” novels are truly written so the white population can feel absolved of the atrocities committed by their ancestors.

So, Monk makes a pen name and decides to write his own novel on the Black experience as a joke to himself and to his editor. After some resistance, they decide to send it to a couple publicists. To their surprise, the publicists love it.

And the biggest joke within the film is the Liberal Elites constant fawning over Monk’s book because of how profitable they see it, and looking past the obvious satirical nature of it.

"American Fiction" is a film that exhibits how complicated it can be living in cultural dichotomy of Black and White, living in poverty and having wealth, and suburban and urban living. It addresses the convoluted nature of the intersection of White and Black American culture.

The film does not have much of a start or ending. It feels cyclical, a story within a story, and it was the best film I have seen this year so far.

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